Water for Health
What are the benefits of drinking 8 glasses of water a day?
The answer is that there are huge health benefits. Water helps relieve a number of common ailments, such as headaches and hypertension. In addition it helps prevent some long term diseases such as bladder and colon cancer.
The other reason for drinking more water is that it boosts energy levels.
The importance of water and human health
"I'm dying of thirst!"
Well we just might be. It sounds so simple. H20, Two parts hydrogen, one part oxygen. But this element, better known as water, is the most essential, next to air, to our survival. Water truly is everywhere, still most take it for granted.
Water makes up more than two thirds of the weight of the human body, and without it, humans would die in a few days. The human brain is made up of 95% water, blood is 82% and lungs 90%. A mere 2% drop in our body's water supply can trigger signs of dehydration: fuzzy short-term memory, trouble with basic math, and difficulty focusing on smaller print, such as a computer screen. (Are you having trouble reading this? Drink up!) Mild dehydration is also one of the most common causes of daytime fatigue.
Water is important to the mechanics of the human body. The body cannot work without it, just as a car cannot run without petrol and oil. In fact, all the cell and organ functions made up in our entire anatomy and physiology depend on water for their functioning.
- Water serves as a lubricant
- Water forms the base for saliva
- Water forms the fluids that surround the joints
- Water regulates the body temperature, as the cooling and heating is distributed through perspiration
- Water helps to alleviate constipation by moving food through the intestinal tract and thereby eliminating waste- the best detox agent
- Regulates metabolism
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In addition to the daily maintenance of our bodies, water also plays a key role in the prevention of disease. Drinking eight glasses of water daily can decrease the risk of colon cancer by 45%, bladder cancer by 50% and it can potentially even reduce the risk of breast cancer. And those are just a few examples! As you follow other links on our website, you can read more in depth about how water can aid in the prevention and cure of many types of diseases, ailments and disorders that affect the many systems of our bodies.
The function of every cell in our body is controlled by electrical signals sent through our nervous system from the brain. Our nerves, in reality, are an elaborate system of tiny waterways. If the fluid inside our nerves thickens due to dehydration, or is contaminated with synthetic chemicals or toxic heavy metals like lead, the vital signals can get distorted. Many experts now believe that the distortion of these signals may be the root cause of many degenerative diseases and neurological illnesses like Attention Deficit Disorder, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, anxiety, depression and even Alzheimer's disease.
Considering the major role that water plays in the function of our brain and nervous system, its purity is possibly the most basic and essential key to healthy longevity. Proper digestion and nutrient absorption depend on a healthy intake of water. In order for our body to get the nutritional value from our foods and supplements, we must consume plenty of good water. Since sugars and carbohydrates are absorbed more rapidly, even a slight degree of dehydration can cause us to get the caloric intake without the nutrition from the foods we eat.
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Improved energy levels
Our energy level is greatly affected by the amount of water we drink. It has been medically proven that just a 5% drop in body fluids will cause a 25% to 30% loss of energy in the average person... a 15% drop in body fluids causes death! Water is what our liver uses to metabolize fat into useable energy. It is estimated that over 80% of our population suffers energy loss due to minor dehydration. An increased intake of healthy water will help metabolize and shed stored fat... resulting in more energy and less fat.
Detoxification is probably the single most important component to long-term health... and one that relies almost exclusively on an adequate intake of good water. Water is our body‘s only means of flushing out toxins‚ the key to disease prevention. In our industrialized‚ chemical society‚ we are exposed to literally hundreds of harmful substances daily. Our air‚ our foods and everything we touch... contain traces of harmful chemicals. Unfortunately we can‘t keep toxins from getting into our body‚ but we can help our body to get rid of them by drinking plenty of healthy water.
The more water we drink... the more we allow our body to purify itself. Almost all-degenerative disease is the result of toxins building up in our body. The quality of the water we drink is equally as important as the amount. If water already contains chlorine and other chemicals‚ it has less of an ability to carry toxins out of our body. If we consume water that contains traces of synthetic chemicals‚ then we force our liver and kidneys to be the filter... ultimately damaging or destroying two of our most vital organs. With an abundant intake of clean‚ healthy water we allow our body to perform all the healing processes that it is naturally capable of.
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Common ailments and illnesses prevented with an increase of healthy water
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Recently there has been a dramatic swing in medical theory and a long overdue realization about "Wellness."
The best way to prevent‚ help, overcome‚ and in many cases eliminate illness is to give our body the right tools and let it go to work. With the proper intake of healthy water‚ the right minerals and nutrients‚ our body can overcome many challenges.
Charles D. Strand; Water Quality Specialist, President/CEO Sun Water USA
The human body is an amazing healing machine, with bad cells being replaced with good ones millions of times per second! Constant regeneration of skin, bones, hair, nails, damaged nerves, organ linings... virtually every healing process that happens in our body, happens primarily with water!
An increased intake of water and the proper immune enhancing nutrients‚ combined with a little patience and common sense are by far the best defense against most minor infections. Allowing our body to overcome minor infections with fever‚ fluids nutrition and rest, increases our natural resistance and makes us less susceptible to biological intruders in the future. Truly the best offense is maintaining a good "defense."
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Our brain is over 75% water and when it detects a shortage of available fluids it implements a water rationing process by producing histamines‚ causing pain and fatigue. This natural process is meant to slow us down and conserve water for defense uses, (Like an animal lays in the shade when ill). Histamines are released as a warning signal that something is wrong. When we take antihistamines or analgesic medicines like acetaminophen or ibuprofen we mainly turn off the signal and do little or nothing for the problem. A big glass of pure water and a 20 minute decompression break will overcome most common stress related headaches. (It takes medications longer to work than that!)
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Back pain is often the result of a deficiency in body fluid levels. The discs in our back are really little hydraulic shock absorbers. These discs are made up of an outer shell of flexible joint tissue, filled with fluid pockets, primarily water. A properly hydrated disk creates a cushion that absorbs the normal shock of physical activity and supports the weight of the upper body.
These discs are self hydrating as long as there are adequate fluid levels and regular movement. Movement that compresses and releases pressure on the disc creates a suction that allows body fluids (99% water) to be pulled inside the disc, keeping it properly hydrated. When a disc is fully hydrated, the shell of the disc supports 25% of the weight load and the fluid supports 75%. When these discs become dehydrated, the shell has to support a larger portion of the load causing pain, swelling, soreness and can lead to more serious problems also.
Passive activities like standing or sitting at a desk without regular movement for prolonged periods, allow constant pressure on the discs which slowly forces the fluid out. Without sufficient body fluid levels and spine movement, the pressure on the disc increases and results in pain and stiffness. Simply by maintaining a constant and adequate intake of water, combined with regular movement such as bending forward, backwards and side to side, with your head and upper body allowing the discs to hydrate, you can prevent and stop most minor back and neck pain. Try it, you'll be amazed how easy and effective these natural solutions can be.
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Hypertension is very often a result of the body adjusting to blood volume loss. The most common cause of lower blood volume is dehydration. Since our blood is more than 83% water its total volume is heavily affected by our intake level of water into our body. When the body detects a loss of blood volume‚ it closes off less active capillary beds in order to maintain proper blood flow to the more active areas. These vessel closings cause a rise in tension inside the muscle mass which we have come to know as "hypertension." More water allows proper blood volumes and a lower level of muscle tension.
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Arthritis pain and stiffness
Arthritis pain and stiffness is now understood to be initially a result of increased friction and swelling in the bone joints. Water is what our body uses to lubricate these joints and hydrate the pliable joint cartilage. When our water levels are reduced there is increased friction between the cartilage surfaces resulting in swelling, stiffness and pain. The movement of the joints causes a suction that pulls water from the bone marrow to the joint cavity if there is proper hydration. An increased intake of water and gentle rhythmic movements of the joints can ease, and in many cases, overcome minor arthritic pain and swelling.
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Asthma‚ which affects over 12 million children in North America alone and causes the deaths of several thousand each year‚ is a direct result of increased histamine production. Dehydration initiates exaggerated histamine production as a water regulating control. It is well known that asthmatics have excessive levels of histamines in their lung tissue causing constriction of the bronchial passages and increased mucus build up. Water is used in the lungs to keep the tissue moist‚ but each time we exhale‚ we expel moisture from our lungs. Under normal hydrated conditions the moisture is rapidly replaced.
If we are in a dehydrated state then the tissue inside the lungs begins to coat with mucus to prevent drying. It has been demonstrated in many animal studies that an increase in water intake will reduce histamine levels and over a 2 to 3 week period restore normal hydration to lung tissue and reduce mucus build up. Once this occurs‚ the bronchial passages begin to open and normal breathing is restored. The same histamine related effects apply to allergies‚ and again‚ significant benefits can result from an increased intake of healthy water and increased movement.
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Morning sickness; something thought of as normal‚ is a direct result of dehydration. The fetus lives in a world of water which the body naturally prioritizes above all other needs. Throughout the night‚ which is the longest period without water intake‚ the uterus draws water from the mothers system to maintain uterus fluid levels and those of the fetus. In the morning the mother awakens in a state of dehydration‚ histamine nausea and fatigue. Hence the term "morning sickness", more appropriately "Morning dehydration."
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A common hang-over
A common hang-over produces the same symptoms and has essentially the same cause, (dehydration), as morning sickness... only with a less noble purpose. Alcohol is a very strong diuretic and causes the body to excrete water, often leading to advanced dehydration. Both morning sickness and the common hang-over can be prevented by drinking plenty of water before and throughout the night.
While water is certainly not an absolute cure-all, we must recognize it as the base and primary ingredient to every preventive and healing process inside our body. We are truly a magnificent creation capable of preventing and curing even the worst of disease and illness.
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